Can a Superhero Be A Bigot? (Deathstroke Annual #1 Spoilers)

Can you have a superhero who is a bigot? Does someone who fights for Truth, Justice and the American Way be a racist? It would fight against the classic ideal of a superhero, reflecting the anti-bigotry feeling of the times, even if that can equally be criticised in retrospect. It was quite the journey from this…

… to this…

…but there have been plenty of good-intentioned slips along the way.

Oh bloody hell.

Okay, okay, but had characters who were at least trying. How about a superhero who is out-and-out bigoted even in the time he is set? There have been characters out of time who have brought their mindsets to the present day, but even Captain America wasn't that fazed. And during Secret Empire, he was definitely the bad guy,

You might argue USAgent, and certainly Guy Gardner has been rather sexist when he wasn't hit on the head, but they were intended to be commentary.

This week's Deathstroke Annual #1 however gave us the new Power Girl.

Now, originally Power Girl, also known as Kara and Karen Starr, was the cousin of Superman from the world of Earth-Two, who becomes stranded on the main DC Earth. Sharing an origin with Supergirl, after the Crisis On Infinite Earths killed off Superhirl, time got rewritten and Supergirl's past stories now became Power Girl's. And then another Supergirl returned and then the original Supergirl, and it all became a bit of a mess. Power Girl was restores as the Supergirl of Earth 2 with the New 52, game to the DC Universe and left for Earth 2 again, giving her title and powers to hr intern Tanya Spears who became the new Power Girl.

So how's that been going? A member of Deathstroke's Defiance super-team… there have been issues.

Justifying her homophobia because she is Christian. Though most Christian superhero characters have generally emphasised their tolerance and progressiveness. Christian bigots are usually the bad guys… and as for hookups in the home, she also exhibits considerable hypocrisy when Wally West comes over.

Something Jericho calls her on.

And is brutal with it.

Clearly something is up. This Power Girl has been having flashbacks/dreams/visions of the other Power Girl, complete with boob window, and has been freaking out.

It could be that this triggered her previous arguments, caught up in a fight. Or it may have revealed feeling she had kept hidden.

Anyway, superheroic storylines burst in, as the team fight Anton Krelisch, a fictionalised version of Martin Shkreli… but it seems that Tanya pays the price…

In proper classic death-of-a-Supergirl-being-held mode.

But do not fret! She's a superhero so there are other options. And she has found an old friend…

Trapped in the closet?

(W) Christopher Priest (A) Denys Cowan, Bill Sienkiewicz, Larry Hama (CA) Ryan Sook
"An Innocent Man"! Team Defiance is pushed to the edge of oblivion when one of their own ends up dead-and Deathstroke is to blame! Is this the end of Slade Wilson's hero turn? It's all been building to this-don't miss the finale of "Defiance," the events of which will lead Deathstroke down a shocking new path!
RATED T+In Shops: Jan 31, 2018
SRP: $4.99


About Rich Johnston

Head writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world. Living in London, father of two. Political cartoonist.

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